The Prom is an upcoming musical comedy and is a cinematic adaptation of the Broadway play of the same name. Boasting a star-studded cast, including the likes of Meryl Streep, Kerry Washington, and Andrew Rannells, it is set to be released on December 11, 2020, on Netflix. Set mostly in Indiana, the story follows a bunch of failed Broadway actors as they take up a cause far greater than themselves. Featuring a blend of comedy, drama, great music, and above all, an underlying social message- Ryan Murphy’s The Prom is shaping up to be a heart-warming, definite watch if musicals are your thing.
The Broadway play follows Indiana high-school student Emma who is at standstill with a crisis. All she wants is a regular prom with her girlfriend, Alyssa. Despite initial support, the PTA head- who is also Alyssa’s mother, bans them from attending. What follows is a potpourri of emotions and extravagance. The Broadway stars eventually let go of their egos and devote themselves to organizing a memorable prom for all of Indiana.
The story and what it tells us
The Broadway play is fun and extravagant- but more importantly, it has something to say, something to stand for. It is a story that we, in many ways, need to hear. Queer representation of all kinds is of paramount importance. Queer-ness, just like most other identities, is not a “one size fits all”. To see oneself represented in a queer narrative can be a milestone in coming to terms with one’s identity. Above all, societal issues linked to gender and sexuality are often perceived to be concepts far too mature to be discussed with kids.
On the contrary, normalizing a spectrum of identities from the get-go is the only path to an inclusive world. And, that is precisely what the play does. By bringing high school kids and their stories into the picture, this queer coming-of-age story aims for two birds with one stone. Firstly, it creates a narrative that queer youth, closeted and open alike, can identify by.
Secondly, by showcasing the innocence of young love, it encourages conversation around acceptance and normalization. Perhaps, the hallmark of it all is the joy that is inbuilt into the arc- the joy of being able to help out and the joy of being able to be one’s authentic self. And, that is precisely why The Prom is a truly heart-warming, definite watch. My favorite track from the play says it all- music blares and no one cares who your unruly heart loves…
Shiloh Nelson is an up and coming starlet, most recently featured in Netflix’s original film, “Feel The Beat”.
Cliché: How does it feel to be the star of a hit Netflix movie at such a young age? Is it exciting to know that you will be having such a large role in the movie?
Shiloh: “It feels so amazing to be in a Netflix movie! Seeing myself on the poster was such a surreal moment. It had been a goal of mine to be in a Netflix original for a while. I recently said on Instagram that this was my first time being on Netflix and a fan corrected me that two of my movies were on Netflix which I’m glad he did! But it’s a big career move for me to be in a Netflix original.“
Shiloh Nelson, image credit to Deidhra Fahey
Cliché: Did you get to work with anyone that you look up to? If so, was it interesting to get to know them personally on set?
Shiloh: “I had really looked up to Sofia Carson before doing this movie. I had watched her in all of her Descendants movies and her A Cinderella Story film so getting to work with her was such a dream. I learned so much from her and had the best time on set. One time we were doing lines off-camera for one of the girls and the camera separated us and we started singing her song ‘Space Between’ that she sang with Dove Cameron in her Descendants 2 film. I’ve loved that song for forever so that was so much fun! Getting to know her on set I saw what a genuine, kind person she really was which was so special.“
Cliché: How does working on a Netflix show differ from working on a movie like “Annabelle” or, “Tomorrowland”?
Shiloh: “Annabelle was a much smaller set due to it being a horror film. This set was definitely much bigger! This was also the longest I’ve ever worked on a film due to the month of dance training before filming which was so much fun!”
Cliché: Being prominent on TikTok is a really good way to get your name out there and develop a good fan base, do you enjoy having a large TikTok following? And do you feel that it brings you closer to your fans in a fun and interactive way?
Shiloh: “Absolutely. One of my favorite things is watching the duets that my fans make on Tik Tok. Being able to see their faces watch my videos and see their reactions is priceless. They’ve been making their own Tik Toks acting Ruby’s lines from the movie and tagging me in them which has been so special. As an actor, I make films and videos for the audience so being able to have that interaction with them and that closeness is absolutely incredible.“
Cliché: Was it overwhelming to handle all of the opportunities you have been involved with since your role in
Shiloh Nelson, image credit to Deidhra Fahey
“Mom’s Night Out”? And if so, how have you learned to handle the stress that comes with balancing all of your projects, such as youtube and tiktok, and also finding time for fun?
Shiloh: “It’s really important for me to take one day off over the weekend. Even if I have a lot to do on Monday or a big audition, I still take a day off because it’s so important for me. I have a lot of fun playing computer games with my brothers and friends and baking and making crafts!“
Cliché: Did working with Sofia Carson teach you anything new about being an actress?
Shiloh: “Sofia taught me to always bring my mom to set even when I’m 18 and don’t have to. You always need your mom, even when you’re older. And Sofia brought her mom to set!“
Cliché: Is there anything about your character Ruby that you see yourself in? Do you two have anything in common?
Shiloh: “I so respect how Ruby knows who she is and knows what she isn’t which I wish was a skill I had more of. We’re both optimistic which I love!”
Cliché: What was your favorite part of the movie to film?
Shiloh: “The really bad dance at the beginning! Before Sofia’s character April teaches the girls how to dance, we go to a competition and the dance is so bad. It was fun because they let us add our quirks and mess-ups and it was so much fun to just be bad and the dance turned out so hilarious.“
Professional wrestling is undoubtedly one of the most polarizing facets of our pop culture. The debate of whether or not it truly fits the description of a sport has gone on for decades. When it comes down to it, professional wrestling is entertainment, performed by athletes who have made it their mission to be the best inside the squared circle. Just be careful not to call it “fake”, as the term is pretty much considered derogatory to the wrestling community. Whether or not you’ve been a fan for years (like myself), or you’ve completely fallen out of love with it (like the person who got me into it in the first place: my brother), or perhaps you’ve never watched it and don’t have a desire to, Fighting With My Family, based on a true story,is a film worth checking out. That’s because it’s for everyone.
Dwayne Johnson (center), along with Florence Pugh (left), and the real Saraya “Paige” Bevis (right).
Co-produced by Dwayne Johnson (who also makes appearances in the film) and starring Florence Pugh, Vince Vaughn, and Lena Headey from Game of Thrones, Fighting With My Family tells the story of professional wrestler Saraya Bevis – better known to wrestling fans as “Paige”. The film follows her journey from growing up in a family of professional wrestlers to making it to the biggest professional wrestling company on the planet: World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Pugh portrays Paige, the anti-diva. She’s not your typical blonde, model-esque, female wrestler that people were used to seeing for years. She’s a tough, black-haired, pale-skinned, British girl from Norwich, with dreams of superstardom. She shares this dream with her ride or die brother, Zak, portrayed by Jack Lowden. However, as seen in the trailer, Paige is the only one of the two to get that shot at glory.
The film is essentially a dramedy, mixing intense scenes with ones that will give you a good laugh – more particularly by Paige and Zak’s loving and supportive parents, Patrick and Julia Bevis. You can also count on Vince Vaughn to give you those much-needed laughs in between those emotionally draining parts. It’s a story you’ve probably never seen played out in a movie before about a young woman you’ve probably never heard of either. But none of that matters when the film’s themes are ones that anyone can relate to.
With a cast that is fully committed to their performances, you’d start to question why all the big film studios ultimately passed on the project. You’ll be cheering for Paige as she struggles to find herself, and Zak as he searches to find his true purpose in life. No longer are the days that female wrestlers must look like they came off the pages of a centerfold. Because of Paige and her story, you can look and be different, and still make it.
Due to a serious neck injury that she sustained at a WWE Live Event in Long Island, Paige was forced to retire at just 26 years of age. But even though her in-ring career was cut short, her journey from humble beginnings to wrestling champion is still a very inspiring and undeniable one. After watching the film, you will feel like, just as Paige has, you can go against the status quo and drown out those around you who are saying you’re just not good enough.
Fighting With My Family is now playing in select theaters in the United States. The film will open nationwide on February 22, and February 27 in the United Kingdom. Check out the trailer below.
There are absolutely no words to describe the suffering and the pain that the Swedish-born actress Frida Farrell faced a little over 16 years ago in a Harley Street flat when she was sold as a sex slave. Now, not only is she speaking out against this evil but she is a fighter against sex trafficking. In addition, she turned her real-life story into a film called Apartment 407, which was slated for release on Tuesday, November 6th, on Amazon.com. When Frida is not busy acting, she is being a voice for other sexual assault survivors and combating sexual harassment in the workforce as well as on college campuses. We chatted with Frida Farrell about the film, the message that she hopes audiences take away from it and her role as a human rights activist.
Cliché: What was the experience like working on Apartment 407?
Frida Farrell: The experience on Apartment 407was great and it was one of the hardest roles that I’ve ever done. It is difficult to play a role in real events that deal with sex trafficking.
Was the process of writing and starring in a film based on your own horrific experience challenging? How did you mentally prepare yourself before shooting the film?
It was very challenging. I think it was the most challenging thing for me besides having a baby.
I actually tried to ignore the horrific tragedy that happened to me until the first day of shooting the film on set. Once I got on set, I thought, ‘Oh crap, I got to do this now.’ After that, I tried to remove everything about myself including the terrible experiences that I encountered and just play the character.
Why should people go see Apartment 407? What’s the message that you hope people take away from the film?
People should go see Apartment 407 because it is a topic that needs to be broader and talked about. In addition, some people don’t actually know what goes on in the underworld. This film shows how easy it is for a woman to be taken and how nasty some people can be.
First off, if a woman has been raped, she is not a victim, rather she is a survivor. The message that I hope people take away from the film is that it’s okay to talk about your traumatic experience and I don’t want women to feel embarrassed, ashamed, or alone in their misery. Instead, I want them to be inspired so that they can talk about what happened and get over it and then move on with their life.
What’s your message to other victims of sexual assault on coping with a traumatic experience?
My message to victims of sexual assault is that they are not alone and that there are other people like them. Also, if you talk about your traumatic experience then everything will be alright.
Can you talk about the ways in which you have continued to stay strong after what happened to you?
I was silent for 10 years and didn’t tell anybody what happened to me. I tried to ignore my traumatic experience but it never goes away. Most often, women blame themselves so I’ve learned to just deal with it and not feel embarrassed to share my story.
Can you talk about your role as a human rights activist?
I would like to take this film and go to universities or colleges and show the early 20-year-olds the film and screen it there so that they can be educated and aware of human sex trafficking.
What was the transition like leaving home at an early age to pursue a modeling career?
At the time, I didn’t think so much of it, although I felt fine doing it. However, I didn’t see the danger of living on my own in another country at a very young age until I was in the middle of it. But if I was 16 years old today, I wouldn’t have thought about that in a million years.
What inspired you to get involved with acting?
It was a long time ago when my grandmother took me to see Romeo and Juliet when I was six-years-old, and I was mesmerized by the artists on the stage. I thought, “Wow, I want to do that one day.” I also wanted to be a ballet dancer but I broke my knee when I was 11 years old. So I decided to transition over to the theater because I wanted to make good money, and eventually, I fell in love with theater.
When looking back on your career, who was the person who helped guide you to get you to where you are now?
Nobody. I didn’t have a mentor who would be able to answer any acting questions or give me any sort of advice. I did it all on my own. I wish I had a mentor. It was when 13 years ago when I arrived at LAX airport with four bags alone and rented a car and also living in the car until I found a place to live.
What are some things you enjoy doing outside of acting?
I love seeing movies. Before I had my daughter, I would see three movies a week in theaters. I also like to work with music and enjoy singing.
Are there currently any future projects that you are working on or will be working on?
Yes. I have my own film company called Development Hell Pictures. I have a film called Apartment 407 that was slated for release on Tuesday, November 6th and the film can be purchased on Amazon.com. The film is based on my own personal story of the horrific events that I have gone through, including sex trafficking. My next film project is called Albert, a dramedy which will be shot in London sometime next year in the spring.
Is there anything else you would like to add or say?
The film Apartment 407is shot in a way that when Isobel gets locked in the room the audience will get a sense of exactly how she was feeling in the room with no cuts in-between that scene. I also want the audience to actually feel the pain and sadness that Isobel was feeling in that moment locked in the room.
If one thing’s for certain, Brooke Lewis has made a name for herself in the entertainment world. Not only is she known in film as a “Scream Queen”, but she is also a board-certified life coach, a celebrity dating coach, and an entrepreneur. Add to that, she is the Celebrity Ambassador of The Breaking The Chains Foundation. She will be seen in the film, ½ New Year, which is slated for release next year. We chatted with Brooke about her character in the film, her affinity for the horror genre, and the ways in which she has been a voice for female empowerment.
Cliché: What attracted you or inspired you to want to become involved in the acting industry?
Brooke Lewis: I was a very emotional child. I would literally sit underneath the television watching TV for hours on end. When I was a little girl I would put myself into the television series and I would talk to the characters as if I was one of them. So I was kooky and I still am. In addition, I loved to emote and be artistically creative with dancing and music.
Were you always interested in the horror genre? How does it feel to be known as a “Scream Queen”?
Yes. I always say, “Nobody wakes up one day and has a goal of being a famous Scream Queen.” Since I was a little girl I was obsessed with vampires and for Halloween, I would be looking for vampires because I thought that they were so sexy. On top of that, I was a girl in the 80s so I grew up watching all of the hot 70s and 80s movies. Some of those movies were Prom Night, the original Halloween, and Friday the 13th. I never dreamed that I would one day become known as “Scream Queen” in that genre.
At first, it was confusing since I grew up acting as a music theater gal in Philadelphia and then when I moved to New York, I had my first little big break when I filmed for Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, which was a mobster comedy. After that, I was doing a lot of Indie films in New York as well as mobster movies. But once the film Polycarp got released, Showtime picked it up and the movie was aired three nights a week for two years straight. All of a sudden, many horror fans were sending me fanmail and said to me, “Wow, you are the new Scream Queen.” I just embraced every minute of it and felt very blessed.
How much work and motivation did it take for you to prepare for a big role in ½ New Year?
One of my dearest friends from Philadelphia, Drew McAnany, who is the star of ½ New Year, told me after struggling in Hollywood for his lead role break for years that he is going to write himself a piece to get starred. He wrote this piece about six years ago. He wrote Pam DeLuca and I am one of the lead characters in the film. It was the most incredible gift and honor that an actress can ever get for that role.
Drew went through various directors, cast members and producers but it never got off the ground. However, one day the talented Georgia Menides came to Drew and she did a rewrite. In the summer of 2017, Drew called to tell me that the film was happening and to start getting ready for rehearsal in November. I was like, ‘OMG, it’s happening.’ I had years to prepare creatively but I had to prepare real quickly mentally. Last but least, this role was very special for me to play.
Can you describe your character, Pam? Do you relate to her at all?
She is a caricature of my badass girls who I grew up with back in Philadelphia and in New Jersey. Pam has great success in her business and great success in her friendship. However, she is not having great success in her love life. Let’s just say, she is a bit of a cougar and may be similar character wise to Stifler’s mom in the American Pie franchise.
Yes. Pam is a career gal like me. She is in Hollywood. I have dedicated a lot of my adult life to being an actress, being a board-certified life coach and a celebrity dating coach. I chose to not have children and I chose to not get married young so that’s totally Pam. Now, I am blessed to be engaged to a wonderful guy who supports my career. The huge difference between Pam and I is that Pam is focused on her career and not her love life.
What’s the message of the film? What should viewers pay attention to when watching the film?
The message of the film is actually the tagline, which is, the friends are the family that we choose. I feel like when you move to a big city like Los Angeles or New York to pursue your dreams and your career, you often times leave your family. So you end up choosing your friends to be around and they end up being your dysfunctional family. I would say ½ New Year has created an additional family for me, Drew, Georgia and Tom Morash.
Typically, when you hear of a coming of age film, you think it tends to be a film language for young, but it’s more of a coming of age film for people in their 20’s and 30’s. As a dating expert and a board-certified life coach, I always say, “You can have it all, but you can’t have it all at the same time.” The characters in this film are exemplified where one person is having success in his career but not in his love life. There are so many topics that this film covers. I think ½ New Year is going to be an Indie film sleeper hit at the Film Festival next year.
How has it felt winning over 70 awards for your work? Were there any specific awards that meant a lot to you to win?
Every day I am thanking God for the gratitude and for these beautiful statues, trophies, and certificates that I have on my wall in my office. I want more for my career. I want another television series which I am fighting to get. I have had my ups and downs being in this industry for 20 years professionally, and I have learned to stay humble and grateful.
Yes. There were two actor awards that I was honored with that touched my soul. The first award was Best Actress in a drama for a short film called Sprinkles. Then this year I was honored for the Best Actress in an Independent Film for Psycho Therapy, which is a thriller. So when I am honored with these awards, it touches me on a deep level and it makes me like I am doing something right.
What have been some of your favorite experiences in your career?
There were so many. It’s always the people who have supported my career and those who I supported their career. I cherish all the projects that I’ve done including the charity events and the red carpet events. All of my fans have been so loyal to me over the years. I wouldn’t be at this point in my career without all of that support.
Not only are you a successful actress, but you are also an expert as a celebrity dating coach. How did you develop an interest to want to be a TV dating expert?
I dated a lot and wrote a book about it. I was one of those women who loved dating. Once I became a successful board certified life coach, people would ask me for my advice. When my acting clients came in, they would start crying about their auditions because they didn’t get the film they wanted. So I would then break it down and say to them, “What are you really crying about?” “What’s the rejection that you really feel?” As it turns out, nine times out of ten, they are actually upset that the guy that they went on a date with the other night didn’t call them back.
I find it interesting how I was able to merge my personal experiences with my professional experiences.
As a board certified life coach, how do you feel your book, Coaching from a Professed Hot Mess, sets itself apart from other motivational books? What do you hope readers take away when reading the book?
In my book, Coaching from a Professed Hot Mess, I share some of my own personal experiences with dating and offer dating advice. In addition, I talk about having body image issues and struggling with weight as a woman. So my book is tended to make readers laugh and cry at times and to support men, women, teens, and LGBTQ communities. You can find this book on Amazon.com or at Barnes and Noble. I think the way my book sets itself apart from other motivational books is that they are structured through a therapy standpoint or a self-help standpoint. On the other hand, my book is simply from the heart. Also, I feel that my book demonstrates that we are all imperfect and a hot mess.
I hope that the readers can walk away with one relevant piece of information and that it supports each one of them individually. I always say if I can take away one nugget of powerful information that could better my life then it was a great experience.
Can you talk about the ways in which you have been a voice on female empowerment? Why did you feel it was important to take a stand on helping young girls and young women be their truest selves and to help motivate them?
As a woman in Hollywood and having to be living far away from my family, I have had to navigate as an independent woman and have had to pay the bills. Nothing has come easy for me. I had to work super hard for everything I got. So I write to empower other women who are going through the same challenges as me and to let them know that if you choose powerfully in your life, whatever the consequences are, you will come out shining in some way. You just need to keep going and not let the challenges that you face in society break you down. As I’ve mentioned before, you can have it all, but you can’t have it all at the same time.
I enjoy working with female empowerment charities. For example, I am a Celebrity Ambassador for The Breaking The Chains Foundation (BCTF), which is for men and women. This foundation empowers women who deal with eating disorders, body imaging issues, and body shaming. We can find the strength within, especially women, to get through the challenges in life. In addition, women always have to be willing to walk. That’s where the power lies.
I felt it was important for me to take a stand because I was a young girl once and I was a teen girl once who faced a lot of challenges. My parents got divorced when I was 2 years old and I struggled with body and emotional issues. Nowadays, young girls have shared with me their stories on my talk show publicly or personally about what they are going through. It is pretty amazing how we as adults have to give young girls more credit because they are wiser and more in touch with their feelings than we care to admit. When I have 12 or 14-year-old girls coming to me with their issues, and I ask them, “What is the biggest challenge that you are faced with at this moment?” They say to me, “I am so worried about making the right choices in life.” It’s actually amazing how they actually think about adult issues and they think forward about their future and what it will be like.
Aside from acting and being a celebrity dating coach, you are involved in giving back to many charity foundations. Why was it important for you to get involved in so many charitable causes?
I am a firm believer in giving back. I think that whatever little gift that I have been given as a celebrity in some way, it is my duty to help others and put a smile on someone’s face who is facing a challenge. On a selfish note, I faced a lot of challenges. For instance, I would get depressed if I gained five pounds last week or if I didn’t book the television series that I was up for.
At this point in your life, who was the person who helped guide you to get you to where you are now?
I have been blessed with wonderful people in my life and I am so grateful for that. My two favorite Hollywood icons are Elizabeth Taylor and Mae West. They are my forever icons because they are two powerhouse women who beat the Boys Club of Hollywood. They have inspired me and I hope one day I will have the opportunity to make a memorable mark as they have.
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not acting or working?
It’s very rare that I am doing something else besides from acting or working. I am a Broadway girl and I love musical theater. I also love wine and tequila tasting. I enjoy going to the movies and watching Netflix on the couch with my fiancé. We would watch The Real Housewives.
Are there any future projects that you are working on or will be working on?
I am still running the Film Festival with a couple of short films. I want to shout to Markus Redmond who wrote and directed Allen + Mille, which is a short romance film that I produced and got to star in with one of my amazing talented besties Courtney Gains. We have been extremely grateful to be part of this piece that we are running around. In addition, another short film that I got to act in was Rotting Love. Lastly, I also got to act inEvolution War which is a feature film. Evolution War was directed by one of my favorite Sci-Fi directors Neil Johnson.
Talk about seeing your future as a toddler. That was the case for the beautiful actress Mollee Gray, who is known for her role as “Giggles” in Disney’s Teen Beach franchise. Mollee always wanted to be a top-notch dancer and a professional actor when she was young. At 27 years old, she has already accomplished both major feats. Now, she can be seen in a new film on Lifetime called A Night to Regret, which premiered on June 24th. We chatted with Mollee about her character Chelsea, the experience working on the film and the key takeaways that fans should be looking out for in it.
Cliché: What was your experience like working on A Night to Regret? What was your favorite part?
Mollee Gray: A Night to Regret was an emotional roller coaster every day on set! My character, Chelsea, went through so much throughout this film. Luckily, the entire cast and crew were incredible and made each day amazing. My favorite part was actually the chemistry reads during the audition process. Reading with so many different people for other roles was so much fun. I loved to see their take on the script!
How would you describe your character, Chelsea Bilson? Did you relate to her at all?
Chelsea Bilson is a passionate, intelligent, hard-working, survivor who gets wrapped up in a terrible situation by being a little too naive. I relate to her in her determination to go after her dreams. Chelsea is in law school but her true passion is filmmaking, and she does whatever she can to make sure she’s able to live that out.
Why do you think people should watch A Night to Regret? What do you hope viewers take away from it?
I think people should watch A Night to Regret because it’s so relevant in today’s society and to people’s use of social media. I hope after people watch, they are a little more careful about what they are choosing to put out on the internet. Always remember that once it’s out, it’s there forever and can end up in the wrong persons’ hands.
What inspired you to become an actress? How did you first get involved with acting?
I always loved theater growing up. Acting, dancing, and gymnastics was my life for so many years. Dance was just the first avenue of my career that seemed to excel the quickest.
What have been some of your favorite experiences in your career?
My favorite moment of my career was when we were filming High School Musical 2, and Kenny Ortega came up to me and said, “Mollee, do you have an agent?” Of course, I responded that I didn’t, so without hesitation, he got on his phone, called his agency, and told them I was a level 10 dancer and a star. Then, he mentioned to them that I needed to be signed with them right away. I was in shock! I couldn’t believe it, but that day was the day that my entire career started. Even though I had done previous work as a dancer, that was the moment that I knew I was good enough to do this for the rest of my life.
Is dance still a big part of your life?
I will always have a huge love for dance. I don’t do many commercial jobs anymore as I am primarily focused on my acting career, but I still travel around the world and teach whenever I can.
When you are not busy acting, what do you enjoy doing?
I love to take my dog, Stewie, to the dog park. I absolutely love to go to the ocean and I am a sucker for a day full of binge-watching television shows on my couch. 🙂
Are you currently working on any future projects you can tell us about?
I have two more movies coming out this year. They are The Reliant and The Favorite, so stay tuned!
Read more Entertainment articles at ClicheMag.com Dazzling Dancer and Actress Mollee Gray Talks About Her Role in ‘A Night to Regret’. Image Credits: Jeka Jane
Let the games begin, especially for the college students. It’s time to revisit Broken Lizard’s 2006 comedy Beerfest with a new reboot of the film, Beerfest: Thirst For Victory, the first original full-length feature film on CW Seed. One of the stars of the new film, Blake Cooper Griffin, is taken Hollywood by storm, having taken on a variety of different roles in both film or television, along with being a strong advocate against bullying, being a voice for some of the victims. We chatted with Blake Cooper Griffin about his character, Scott, and the key takeaways and the message from the new Beerfest film.
Cliché: First off, I can’t imagine the feelings, and especially the vibe that you got, when you first heard of the amazing news that you’d be starring in CW Seed’s first original full-length feature film, Beerfest: Thirst For Victory. What exactly was racing through your mind when you heard of getting a lead role in the movie?
Blake Cooper Griffin: Well, it was funny Justin, because just a few weeks before I found out that I was going to be even auditioning for it, I watched the original by Broken Lizard, and it sort of felt like it was meant to be. When I got the part, one of the things that I was really excited about was that it’s a fun comedy. It is just a pure joy to be a part of this film, the script was fantastic, and the people involved were so great too. Especially getting to work with CW Seed, then with Kids at Play, which were some of the other producers on it, as well as Blue Ribbon Entertainment, all those were places that I always wanted to work with. So the idea that I was getting to do that was really exciting and getting to play Scott was just a dream come true. It was just a really fun part to play.
Were you a fan of the original Beerfest before landing this role? Did you watch it for any inspiration before shooting?
Yes, I was totally a fan. It has some amazing comedic actors in it, it’s hilarious, and it’s about beer drinking. Which you know? If there is one thing that people can agree on is that they like beer drinking. So I thought it was so great. And so many people that were in that movie have had such great careers so I was a total fan of it.
Of course, we are not trying to do the same thing; our whole incarnation of it is inspired by it. It’s the appreciation and love of the movie that we see a new cast of characters picking up the torch and seeing it all in 2018. The thing that I like so much about the original and also our version is the fun of competing with your friends. My character, Scott, is stuck in a rut. He’s the ringleader of the group, and he’s looking to get his mojo back. He’s struggling with what it’s like being outside of college, trying to put his life together, and wondering, ‘How can I make it as an adult?’ and he’s going, ‘This is not that fun.’ I think what he realizes is that he has gotten away from some of the things of college that are really important to hold onto, which are relationships with your friends, always finding ways to have fun in your life, no matter what stage of life you’re in, so I really connected to that part. Every day, life can be very tedious and hard, I knew what that was like right after college, and trying to figure out how to make ends meet. I also had to juggle starting out in an acting career, getting my first apartment, and having to do jobs that you didn’t necessarily want to do. I think what the movie does is that it shows that no matter what you’re going through, if you have your friends, if you’re connecting with things in your life that you enjoy, then you can have a happy life. And I think that’s what Scott finds throughout the movie.
Can you tell me about your character, Scott? Did you relate to him at all?
I did. Oh my gosh. I mean, sure. Scott is goofy. I can be goofy too. I think Scott really loves his friends, which I really love my friends. And like I said, we all have had those moments in our lives where we think, ‘Man, this is not where I want to be,’ so I think Scott is going through that in the movie. I mean, his girlfriend just broke up with him, he is in a job that he really doesn’t like, and he’s trying to figure out how to make things better. I definitely had times like that in my life. Also, one other thing, Scott is very competitive. I have to say, I am pretty competitive too. I love game nights. I play game nights with my friends and it can get a little intense. I like to win. So I connect to that part of Scott as well.
How does he fit into the movie?
I think Scott’s main function in the movie is getting everybody back together. I think that the main core group of friends have sort of strayed a little bit since college, meaning that they don’t see each other every day, or see each other every week. But Scott is the one that realizes, ‘Hey, we have all turned into something that we said we would never be, and I think that is boring.’ I think he’s thinking, ‘Gosh, we have gotten so boring,’ and he’s sort of the catalyst for getting everyone back together. He’s also the person throughout the story who makes a mistake and maybe gets a little too competitive. Then he has to come back to realize that the whole mission of re-entering Beerfest was to reconnect as a group, and I think that was the main function for him in the story.
What do you think the message of the movie is and what are some of the key takeaways that fans should be looking out for in the film?
Well, I think that the great thing about Beerfest is that its pure joy. It was pure joy to shoot, it’s pure joy to watch, it’s a good time. Beerfest is really about reclaiming the fun of college, it’s ultimately about five friends, who reconnect and get together. Scott is also recently single and he’s trying to figure out if he can get back with his girlfriend, Angie. And I think the key takeaway from the movie is that sometimes you have to revisit your past to get your mojo back.
How did you get involved with acting?
I really attribute my ability to enter the career as an actor to going to the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. I am from a small town in South Carolina originally and I never had anyone in my life who had become an actor or who was involved in the entertainment industry at all. So when I started doing plays in high school and I realized that I really liked it, I had an opportunity to audition for the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. I think what that did was that it put me in a community of people that were all pursuing the same thing. They were doing it in a very serious way. And you had such great teachers there whose mission was to help you be the best version of an actor that you can be. They would help you figure out different parts of yourselves that you can turn into different characters. So I have a lot of supporters there at the School of Arts, one of which is one of my biggest supporters, an acting teacher named Tanya Belov. She even supports me today. She will call me, and I will be like, ‘Oh, I am stuck on this character,’ I am trying to find a way in or I am trying to figure out how I can find a commonality with this character. Then we would talk about it. And to have a teacher like that, that has been so dedicated to you is priceless. So I really attribute that as to helping me get into acting because at the end of the four years at the School of the Arts, you go and do a showcase in New York and in Los Angeles. And it was there that I signed with my first agent and managers, and then moved out and just started auditioning.
What advice would you give others looking to pursue it?
Don’t let anyone else tell you who you are. Or, don’t let anyone else tell you how big you should dream. I think that no matter what you do in life; your life or my life has always been infinitely better when I pursued the things in my heart that felt important and something that I would want to get up and do every day.
What are some future projects that you are working on?
Well, I just finished a little film project which I am excited about and I did a little television project that has not come out yet. But one thing that I am really excited about is that I am developing some content for a show with an actress named Kim Shaw, which we are very excited about, having the ability to write our own project. Kim and I have worked together in the past on different film projects and it’s really fun for us to get to write something for ourselves. So I don’t want to get ahead of myself by giving away too many of the details, but I can tell you that hopefully, you guys will be able to see that in the very near future.
Over the years, you have participated for charity causes helping people who have been victims of bullying and showing your support. How has dealing with this growing problem today touched you and what pushed you to want to be a voice for these victims?
Well, first of all, bullying is a huge problem. It’s something that breaks my heart, and honestly, it makes me very emotional to think about people who are harassed, victimized, treated unfairly, or don’t feel safe in their school for whatever reason. I got involved in it, when I did a movie called Love Is All You Need? It was a movie about bullying, and I actually played the bully in the film. But it was at that time that I really started to realize by talking to other people when we would show the movie, people would come up to me after the movie and tell me their stories. And after hearing their stories, it really touched my heart, so I decided that I would get involved. One of the non-profits that I work with is an organization called Boo2Bullying. I have been finding out ways to do events with them, to raise money, but also to do practical things, like going out and speaking to a boys and girls home. I would be talking about self-esteem, feeling good about yourself and treating others fairly. I think right now in our country, it is so important that we think about that, that we should treat everyone with respect no matter who they are, where they come from, or who they love. Everyone should be treated with dignity and respect.
Read more Entertainment articles at ClicheMag.com Film Star Blake Cooper Griffin Discusses ‘Beerfest: Thirst For Victory’ and Weighs in on Bullying. Image Credits: Vince Trupsin
Not only does actor and producer Adam Ambruso have a mission to combat sexual harassment in Hollywood and in the workforce, but he also continues to give back and help out other people in his community. His most recent film Butterfly Caught isset to hit movie theaters in September. The film touches on two hot social awareness topics which are human trafficking and sexual harassment. As a supporter of the Me Too movement, Adam hopes the message that viewers take away is that you don’t have to give up your body to get what you want in life. We chatted with Adam about his character, Randy, and his upcoming projects.
Cliché: You just finished your latest project, Butterfly Caught. It’s worth mentioning that this film touches on a very sensitive and important topic, which is sexual harassment. What was your experience like making the film?
Adam Ambruso: Overall, the team that was making the film was amazing. Manny Rodriguez Jr., who was the director, writer and the producer of the film, along with his wife, have become great friends of mine. My experience was amazing because I enjoyed the team that was making the film and it was challenging for me because I was also working a lot while making the film. I was working a full-time job. So I would be filming all night and then I would be back up at a job in the morning. I lost weight during the shoot because I got a bit run down while filming. I learned so much about action scenes, quick filmmaking, working with gun control, SWAT, and the fire department. My role required firearms and the team wanted me to look like I have been on the SWAT and on the police force for some good amount of time.
Can you describe your character, Randy?
He is a police officer in the film. The script was handed to me by my acting coach at the time, who is now my mentor and producing partner. The minute I looked at the script and read it, I was like, wow, I really resonate with this character named Randy. Throughout the film, Randy is essentially the good guy. So I totally had to play this guy. Randy is the one redeeming character in the film that you are sort of rooting for in the entire movie. He was a crucial character because everyone’s bad and flawed characters juxtaposed against this central strong character that you have to believe throughout the film. He is just a good altruistic police officer who tries to right wrongs, and at the same time, live a full life.
Do you relate to him at all?
I think I relate to Randy because I am the same guy in many ways. In life, I’m also altruistic and I have this vision of me helping humanity. I feel the reason why I am in this industry and in business is that I believe that I am supposed to help people in the larger scale. Nowadays, I help people in my local community. But sometimes people will say, “Why am I in this industry? Why am I given opportunities like this?” I believe it’s because there is a responsibility that comes with that and I feel this desire and need to help more people. So I think Randy and I are very altruistic people who try to help society be better.
What’s the message of the film?
There are a lot of messages to this film. I know we call it a Me Too movement film, but to say that, I feel like it shortchanges the film. The film is much more than that. There is a lot going on in the film. For instance, the issues that the characters have as human beings, which people can relate to. But there is a central theme in the movie of one of the main lead characters. Everything sort of centers around her story of giving up her body to get what she wants in the business and a director taking advantage of that. In the end, I won’t spoil it but things don’t work out as she had anticipated.
How do you hope viewers respond to this film and what would you like them to take away from the film?
I hope viewers respond by feeling that this was true. It was real. That this was a slice of life and it ringed true for them and it impacted them. I hope viewers are not only moved by the film but that it’s also shocking. I also hope they feel the pain of the characters and that it resonates with them while watching the film. I always said that I wanted to make movies that moved, touched and changed people. So that is what I think will happen when people watch this movie. What I hope they take away is that you don’t have to give up your integrity, your body, or your soul to a degree, to get what you want in life. You have to stay true to yourself and honor yourself. That’s the right choice. If you make sacrifices in who you are, it will change you as a human being and you will not find happiness that way.
After you watched the film, how did you react to it and what did you take away from it?
Well, it’s always hard to watch me on camera in a film. So the first thing I had to get past was watching me in the film. Once I did that, I have seen it several times because I been to a bunch of screenings since I promoted the film all over the country. When I watched the film, the first thing I thought was that this was a good film. We did a pretty good job. It was interesting on the set because Manny is a first-time director so I was not being given a lot of input. When we did a complicated scene, Manny would say, “OK, we are moving on.” Then, I would respond, “Oh wait, did we get what we were supposed to get there? Was that good?” He would just tell me that we are moving on. Also, I didn’t get a lot of feedback when the movie was over, so I had no idea how it was going to end up!
I found it to be hard to watch these people spiraling out and making decisions that I have seen friends make before in life. I felt the pain of the characters that made me walk away. In the end, I felt that you can survive bad decisions and negativity. But God, wouldn’t it be better if I wouldn’t have made those decisions in the first place?
Are there any similarities that you saw between the movies Trafficked and Butterfly Caught?
Yes. I remember when I first came to Hollywood, I was deciding what I should do. People would ask me, “What do you want to do? What movies do you want to make?” I told them that I want to make products and movies that moved, touched, and inspired people. What’s interesting is these last five to six years have been transformative in my career and have been a trajectory. People would say to me, “I didn’t even know you were involved in the Me Too movement” or, “I didn’t know you cared about human trafficking.” I think often times the script finds you and the story finds you. The similarities of both films are that they are right in the will house of what’s happening in the world like human trafficking and the Me Too movement. I happen to make movies in the two hottest social awareness movements in the world which are totally coincidental and not something I planned. Those are two awareness movies that are both in alignment with trying to make the world a better place to live.
At this stage in your acting career, who was the person that helped get you to where you are now?
My mentor, Will Wallace, who is a well-known filmmaker. I think he will be one of the big filmmakers of our day. He has been my acting coach as well as my mentor. He pushed me for all of these projects. He directed Trafficked and helped produce it. He was also one of the producers of Butterfly Caught and has definitely been a huge advocate and proponent of mine. We now have a film fund together. So I feel like I earned his respect and he has been transformative in my career and in my life.
What was the best advice you’ve received about acting and who was it from?
I had the good fortune of studying with some amazing people in this town. I have studied with a lot of the big names and they all have given fantastic advice. But I remember one thing that really struck me. As an actor, you can get a little grandiose about your profession. Not to mention there is a tendency to put it on a pedestal, make it larger than life, and bigger than it is. I will never forget what Bob Morris told me, who is my acting coach. He said, “Listen, you are a plumber. Go in, plumb, and get out of the room.” He told me that you are there for a job. When a plumber walks into a room to fix your sink, he opens the bottom door, fixes the sink, and he leaves. There is no fanfare. I remember thinking, “This is just a job.” I do my homework, know what I am doing, get in the room, and don’t make a big fanfare about it. So I found Bob’s advice to really carry me through a lot of situations where you kind of make it larger than life and can trip you up.
Are there any projects that you are currently working on or will be working on?
Yes. Butterfly Caught comes out in September in movie theaters. But I am actually in preparation for my next film called The Last Mile. It’s an action film with a message. It seems like I am always in movies with messages which are good. We start filming in September. We are still aligning all of the cast members. I will be one of the lead actors in the film. I also am evaluating some other films to see whether I will join the cast and the filming would begin this year as well.
What are some things you’re involved with outside of acting?
At this point in my life, with the most recent success I have had in my life, I realized how valuable my time is. I always had more time and less money as a struggling actor. But now, I have got more money and less time. I see people that do volunteer work and take on a lot of causes. I actually want to have my own foundation. I would love to do a lot more charity work. I feel like if everybody took care of their local community and we started this trend, then nobody would have to go anywhere to take care of anybody. We would start this domino effect. So I always try and help out people who I know and who are in my community.
Read more Entertainment articles at ClicheMag.com Adam Ambruso Talks About His Role In ‘Butterfly Caught’ and More. Image Credits: Philippe McClelland
Crazy Rich Asians exceeded box office expectations and made $34 million on opening day. All summer we have been waiting for this best-selling book to come to life in the theaters. With the book being a best-seller, it was a no brainer that the movie exceeded almost $10 million more on opening day than expected.
Crazy Rich Asians is a romantic comedy about Rachel Chu (Constance Wu) and Nick Young (Henry Golding) . Nick invites Rachel to come to his hometown, Singapore, for his best friend’s wedding. Rachel is surprised to learn that Nick’s family is very wealthy and that Nick is considered one of the country’s most eligible bachelors. Once they get to Singapore, Nick’s mom is quick to judge Rachel. Since Rachel does not come from the same background as Nick, his mom immediately disapproves of Rachel.
This movie was filled with drama, comedy and suspense. You will cry and laugh throughout the whole movie. The cast was perfectly selected and worked very well with each other. The ending of the movie was just the icing on the cake! If you think you know what is rich is, you don’t until you’ve seen this movie. All the glitter, is in fact gold for Crazy Rich Asians.
Not only has actress Melissa Carcache carved out a niche for herself as a Hollywood star – she is a firm believer of women empowerment. Earlier this year, Melissa and her sister, Stephanie, created a digital platform that brings women together to empower them and talk about real life experiences. But working on that hasn’t taken away any of the energy and exhilaration that comes with being a sensational actress. From starring in the Nickelodeon series Every Witch Way to co-creating the web series Hialeah – she is now starring in the Hallmark film Love at Sea, which premiered on August 11th. We chatted with Melissa about her character, Alexa, and what inspired her to become a strong leader for young women.
Cliché: What was the experience like filming Love at Sea? What exactly was racing through your mind when you first heard you got a lead role in the film?
Melissa Carcache: The experience was incredible. We got to shoot on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship for two weeks. They definitely made me sweat for the role lol… It was a lot of callbacks but when I got the news I was thrilled. Plus, I got to reunite with an old pal. Carlos and I went to the same acting school in Florida when I was 16, so it was nice to get to work with my friend and his wife Alexa is just beyond. This movie was by far the best experience of my life.
Can you describe your character, Alexa? Do you relate to her at all?
Alexandra is a big YouTube star known for her cooking and lifestyle brand. She’s a perfectionist and really values her work.
I relate to her in those qualities. It’s funny because in the movie my character is stressing about the big event she’s doing on the ship for her YouTube channel and big book launch. At the same time, I was in real life planning my first live podcast meetup event Millennial Women Talk tour, so I was really able to pull from some real-life feelings and put it into the character.
What do you hope people take away from the film? What’s the film’s message?
I hope people understand that there is no perfect life. You get thrown into so many directions that you just can’t foresee. If you allow life to happen to you and you ride that wave, the most amazing things happen that can change your life forever in a great away. Live your life in the moment, you will always end up where you’re supposed to be.
Can you tell us a little about Millennial Women? What attracted you to working on this project with your sister and how has working on this project influenced young women around you?
Millennial Women started because my sister and I were searching for something to inspire us, motivate us and, in a way, let us know everything was going to be alright. Three years ago, she and I were at a crossroad in our lives’ and career and through that process, we created the multimedia company. Our vision and mission are to inspire and create resourceful content for the women of our generation through our traveling podcast Millennial Women Talk. We wanted to highlight amazing women doing incredible things that are changing the world for the better. By meeting these women first hand, it has inspired me to be better, do better and change my perspective on life. All along Stephanie and I were trying to inspire others when truly they are all inspiring us. It is the most fulfilling thing I have ever done. I truly found my purpose in life.
Over the years, you have had a close relationship and ties with the Miami Children’s Hospital. You even premiered season 2 of Every Witch Way at the hospital. So, what persuaded you to want to be a voice for these children and how has working with these children impacted your life?
I’m a happy person by nature. Anything negative in my life is pushed so far back in my mind that I trick myself into thinking that it ever happened. Sickness is something so impactful to the individual who’s suffering but to the family as well. My brother was very ill when he was about 12 and he was in and out of Miami Children’s Hospital. The stress and worry were absolutely terrible. My brother got better and has grown to be a healthy 24-year-old man. I had to find a way to give and share the positivity and gratefulness that the staff at the hospital gave us. I decided to premiere season two in the hospital’s playroom to help the children and their families get their minds off of their reality for a few hours and just bring them happiness, love, and positivity as they go through such a challenging time. The hospital does a great job at being there day in and day out supporting their patients and families.
What advice would you have for people looking to get involved with acting?
Funny enough, the first thing I would say is don’t move to Los Angeles. Right now, there is a huge shift happening in the industry that you don’t need to physically be in LA. I would find creatives in your city and start making stuff and putting it online. Begin building your resume that way instead of trying to get into casting offices in Los Angeles. It’s easy to fall in love with an illusion of what this business looks like and that’s the worst thing you can do. Know yourself and what you want, have patience and always be obedient to your calling. You’ll always end up where you’re supposed to be.
Are there any genres or types of roles that you hope to take on in the future?
I would say drama because I haven’t tapped into that yet. It really depends on what comes my way but I’m just enjoying the process.
Are you currently working on or will you be working on any future projects?
Yes! I have a new series called Hialeah that I co-created and that I’m starring in, which comes out soon. Also, Love at Sea is set to release August 11th and Millennial Women is heading to its’ fourth stop on the tour in Nashville. I’m so excited to have you all onboard this awesome ride.
Read more Entertainment articles on ClicheMag.com ‘Love at Sea’ Star Melissa Carcache Promotes Positive Change For Millennial Women. Image Credits: Dylan Lujano
Get ready for it, Harry Potter fanatics. The sequel to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is coming in November. And actor Eddie Redmayne is giving us some details about Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. According to an article from Entertainment Weekly, Redmayne tells viewers to expect a ‘darker’ story in Fantastic Beasts 2. The star, who plays Newt Scamander, told EW, “The most riveting aspect is the tonal change…When I read [the script] it had these cryptic elements to it and it played like a thriller that made it a page-turner.” Luckily, David Yates is returning to direct, and the screenplay is, like the first film, penned by J.K. Rowling.
Things to Expect in ‘Fantastic Beasts 2’
Of course, there are no spoilers here! So fret not! However, here are a few things to keep in mind. In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Johnny Depp’s character, Grindelwald, was captured. As the title of the sequel suggests, Grindelwald doesn’t just stay in safe custody. The dark wizard is sent to Europe for trial, where he—what a shocker—escapes. Dumbledore (played by Jude Law) then enlists Redmayne’s character Newt to track down Grindelwald. To make matters worse, Redmayne describes Grindelwald’s personal mission as a “political” rally that “causes divisions across families.” So if there’s anything that we can assume from the trailer, as well as Eddie Redmayne’s description, it’s that Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald will be closer to a dramatic thriller than the first film was. Expect less light-hearted moments, and as Redmayne puts it, more of “the Potter lore we’re much more familiar with.”
Andrew Lloyd Weber’s acclaimed musical Cats will sing and dance its way to the big screen with a star-studded cast. The very thought of this revival is surely giving all of the musical theater fans goosebumps. While it’s provoking excitement in some, it’s surely provoking a tinge of scepticism in others. However, the casting is pretty solid. Cats has already confirmed stars such as Ian McKellen, James Corden, Jennifer Hudson, and—this one is a bit perplexing—Taylor Swift. Surely, with all of the big names in place, as well as Tom Hooper directing, Cats will earn a new generation of fans, and hopefully, please the rest of us who already love the legendary masterpiece.
‘Cats’ the Musical Movie Starring Ian McKellen, James Corden, Jennifer Hudson and Taylor Swift
The good news is Tom Hooper is not a stranger to musicals. Hooper directed the Oscar-winning film, The King’s Speech, as well as 2012’s Les Misérables. Les Misérables—based on the classic novel by Victor Hugo—was nominated for eight Academy Awards, winning three Oscars when all was said and done. Obviously, Tom Hooper’s team up with Working Title and Universal worked really well before. Les Mis was gorgeously done, with absolutely brilliant casting, despite what some critics might say. If Les Mis is any indicator as to this future production of Cats, then we are in great shape.
Most of the stars have had musical theater experience, barring the exception of Taylor Swift. At any rate, one can expect a great performance from someone as noteworthy as Ian McKellen. Plus, it’s hard to deny that Jennifer Hudson has got some great pipes. Whatever the popular opinion, this cast will surely bring in a new generation of audiences. With any luck, perhaps even those who avoid musicals will purchase a ticket. As far as the budgeting goes, if it’s anything like Les Misérables’, then Cats will be as lavish as the production deserves.
Andrew Lloyd Weber got the inspiration for Cats from Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, a collection of poems by T.S. Eliot. The musical first opened on the West End in 1981 and came to Broadway in the year 1982. Weber’s Cats is the fourth-longest-running show on Broadway, the run lasting for 18 years. There have been three recent revivals: two on the West End and one revival on Broadway. Clearly, Cats is one of the shows that remains a favorite for musical theater fans.
With a musical score that is a combination of playful, quirky, and haunting, it’s hard not to love at least one of the tracks. The most notable song from the production is “Memory,” a musical piece that many consider one of the best musical theater songs of all time. The story follows the Jellicle tribe of cats as they tell their tales, traditions, and woes. And believe me, if you aren’t a cat person, you still might be able to sympathize with the characters.
There was a previous ‘Cats’the musical movie version released directly to VHS in 1998, which was filmed at the Adelphi theater in London. But Cats has never appeared on the big screen, so this is certainly a first.